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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  August 19, 2011 5:00pm-6:00pm EDT

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that does it for us this week. i'm matt miller and look forward to being with you the next two weeks while d.r. is on vacation. up next, "hardball with chris matthews" starts right now. taxes. the home texas, the home of presidents? let's play "hardball." 5:00 p.m. 5:00 p.m. 13450. good evening. i'm chris matthews down in washington. leading off tonight, second look. it didn't take long for the reaction of rick perry to includes doubts. politico reports congressional republicans are getting skittish over his rhetoric from suggesting the federal reserve chairman is treasonous, to questioning even the president's patriotism. their mevg to perry, what plays in texas may not play in peoria. plus, check out this tweet that went out yesterday. "to be clear i believe in evolution, and trust scientists on global warming. call me crazy."
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nothing remarkable about that except it came from a republican presidential candidate, jon huntsman. how far right has the gop gone when its crazy for a republican presidential candidate to admit he believes in evolution? any difference, by the way, these day, between the republican party and the tea party? also, still pining for hillary? some democrats, though know elected official openly, are having second thoughts about voting for barack obama. to that, a former hillary supporter writes in this sunday's "new york times" magazine. cool it. things would be no different if hillary were president. that's open to debate. we're going to get into that tonight. would hillary have done it better? and the day wouldn't be complete without an interesting oddity out of the head of michele bachmann, would it? come on. now she's suggesting we all fear a rise of the soviet union. she's worried about the soviet union. even though it died 20 years ago. anyway, let me finish tonight with the president. president obama. this is my idea. big, do something big.
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we start with some gop doubts about rick perry. michael steele, former chair of the republican national committee. and he'll always be our republican national committee chair. now he's also the msnbc analyst and ron layingen, political commentator. ron reagan. some thoughts from governor perry. getting to know this guy. i'm getting to know him. here's governor perry going after president obama on jobs today in south carolina. he is hitting the circuit. let's listen. >> the real issue is that the president's out there and he was on a jobs tour. now, i mean, this is the president of the united states that has killed more jobs in america than i think any president in the history, certainly in my lifetime. i think the only job he cares about is the one he's got. >> well, of course, the president came into office in the middle of a recession. when the country was bleeding
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job, rem ratchi hemorrhaging jo. tracking month to month job growth. from january until last month. the big losses. joblessness slowed down. look at that chart. hold on that chart. obama is basically gaining jobs since half way through 2009. the hemorrhaging of jobs was, of course, occurring as he walked into office. michael steele is it fair to say this president's caused our economic problems when he walked into youring a hemorrhaging and took him six months to close up the hemorrhage, begin creating jobs and he's blamed for what bush did? >> absolutely. >> is that fair? >> because it's politics. it's on his watch. >> and you call it -- it's b.s. >> call it b.s., republican would call it something different and democrats call it different if the shoe on the other point. bottom line, rick perry is talking to his audience. not talking to you.
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>> ha! michael, you've learned -- learn how to do this. i show the statistics -- >> i'm going to disagree with your sticks. facts are facts. he's not talking to the facts, how people feel. unemployment, 9.2% is not reflected in the wonderful blue lines you're showing there. the reality, if you've been unemployed since obama became president, if you've, became unemployed seven months into his term, this is something you're feeling right thousand. you don't think about what happened before bush or during bush. you're thinking ript now that's what he's speaking to. >> the party of lincoln, ron, not only the party of fact, the party of guilty. how do you feel? >> exactly right. >> do you feel guilty, you can ignore the numbers. michael brilliantly admitted, facts don't matter. >> i didn't say that. >> you said they don't matter -- >> what i'm saying is, he's speaking to his base. i'm not ignoring the fact. you can talk about the facts of the context of what people are feeling right now. >> great. for his -- a new factor now. ignore the facts.
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let's go on. >> all right. >> your thoughts, ron. it's interesting, lookality the numbers. we have a terrible economy. i know that everybody watching knows that. look at hemorrhaging. this president came in facing this. the "titanic" was sinking. he stopped it frp sealed up the cracks. half way through, first year in office was creating jobs. creating net jobs. your thoughts, ron? >> well, indeed, michael is absolutely right. the audience for rick perry doesn't care about facts. they do just care about how they feel at the moment. and they feel angry, and they're focused that feeling on president obama. who cares about the facts. who cares if the guy who preceded him lost all the jobs. facts don't matter in the republican party anymore. >> look at rick perry, another favorite topic. health care. let's watch and assess it. >> we know what it's going to do to the quality of health care.
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we know what it's going to do to the cost of health care. if i'm so fortunate to be elected to president of the united states on day one, when i walk into the oval office, there will be an executive order on that desk that eliminates as much of obamacare as i can have done with an executive order. >> well, in you have it. he's wearing the brown suit. i guess that's what reagan did. he liked brown suits. you know that, ron. your dad preferred brown suits. this guy acts like to act like reagan, wear a brown suit. i'm kidding. >> i know you are. >> let's talk about this health care thing. first of all, created by statute. he can't really get read of it. go ahead. >> there's aspects of it. sure, aspects of regulatory side of it and maybe other aspects of it he can slow down the process, but you're right. it's largely a statutory issue. just like what the president is talking about immigration. the president came out today
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talking about he's going to, by executive order, make changes in immigration policy and law. so two the extent that the executive pen allows him to did that he will. same is true rp to health care. >> he can't -- >> speaking to his base. >> do you think he can win this fight for the nomination of your party by trashing obama and ignoring his opponents? >> yes. i think so. right now, very smart move. he's had a very good week. engaged the president. the president engaged back. and at the end of it, he came out ahead. >> and machine gun attack. ballistic references, but i really shouldn't. his relentless assault on the president seems to be what they want, ron, on the other side. they seem to want a pugilism, punch, punch, punch, punch, punch, because they feel romney won't do it, huntsman won't and the other candidates don't matter. i guess michele bachmann does, michele bachmann the congresswoman. this guy seems to have the clout to do it. >> michael identified the loathing that perry of audience
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has for president obama. yes, they do want people to be tearing into him all the time. unfortunately, the way perry does that sort of thing, like his comment about ben bernanke being treasonous for exercising monetary policy. the way he does it is going to turn a lot of people off. that stuff may fly in texas like wearing cowboy boots with your suit or something like that, out in the rest of the country, not so much. not so much, really. >> ron, you don't wear your cowboy boots with your suits, man? >> i aware my cowboy boots when i go riding a horse. those are what those are meant more. >> wear the boots inside the pants or outside? that's the question. a former adviser to presidents ronald reagan and george hush ert walker bush. asked about fed chairman bernanke on cnn this morning. let's listen. let's watch. >> rick perry's an idiot, and i don't think anybody would disagree with that. >> well, i think michael
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might -- >> okay. i guess so. >> i think he meant -- i hope he meant, well, he may have meant generally. idiot, fed chairman treasonous saying you've been treated ugly if it gets down to texas when he disagrees with monetary. can't we disagree on something without calling the guy a traitor any in more? monetary policy? >> or calling him an idiot i agree. i said last night. no more name-calling. >> washington misses the point, because rick perry was no more talking to you and this gentleman or anyone else than the man on the moon. specifically talking to his audience. he's in at battle for the republican conservative primary base, talking to them. the reality of it, we're talking about this now in august of -- >> a traitor, get elected in september. >> it's -- >> he did! >> it says -- >> treasonous. >> it's not the same. >> it's not the same? >> now it's not the same thing.
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next year -- >> ha! call a guy -- a different story? i'm scratching my head, literally. i don't get it. >> tantalizing. >> it doesn't matter right now. >> a politico report some congressional republicans right now are worried about this guy. they think the cowboy talk ought to be cut now. in fact, representatives from heavily suburban areas especially fear having to share a ballot with this guy given his more controversial -- peter king, no wallflower, from long island, new york. you can't be calling bernanke a traitor and you can't be questioning whether or not barack obama loves america. if he continues this, he'll have a tough time. your thoughts, michael. >> i go back to my original point. he could care less what this congressman thinks because he wasn't talking to him. the folkswashington think it's all about them. and it's not. >> a congressman from new york. >> it's not same as being you know from texas or south carolina or -- >> where's the republican party
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located now? >> all over america, baby. ought over america. >> and not a -- it can't -- >> a bust, you know? >> michael, it can't be about the 10% of americans that actually agree with perry. that's nonsense if you're talking about a general election. he'll never win. >> look, ron -- i. know he's in the primaries. >> i disagree with you. >> he's running for president. right? or is he just running for the 23407 nomination? >> let's talk about -- coming on -- >> no -- >> for you this is coming on. >> when? >> very soon. in fact, the next segment. >> have fun with him. >> let me ask you the same question. if he's watching. i'm sure he's in your fan club and watching. >> yeah, right. >> let me ask you about this. i want to get the lingo right. you say want to take back our country, it means take the government back from the other party. >> yes. >> when you say servicemen, men and women, should be proud to serve the commander in chief. not going after hi personally?
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what's he say when rick perry says i want our service people to be proud of the commander in chief they take orders from. what does that mean? there's something wrong with barack obama? you can't be proud of this guy who's doubled the number of troops in afghanistan, kept the fight going in iraq according to basically the bush strategy. caught bin laden. i think he's had a pretty clean life personally. a good family man. it couldn't be a moral problem. what do they mean, there's a problem with being respectful of the commander in chief? what do you think -- could it be racial? >> i don't any it's racial. i think it probably has to do with the lack of clarity of foreign policy direction in the middle east. >> doesn't have to do with respect? >> again, i agree with you on this one. probably ron as well that that one to me, was a little outside of the main because it didn't really make sense. the base i don't think largely believed that the president has not done his utmost on behalf of our men and women in uniform. >> a birther stink to it, ron. >> really? >> something ill digit about this president. he's not worthy to serve.
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first of all, you serve your country, not commander in chief. in 1944 voted for dewey against roosevelt and just as loyal as anybody. a lot of republicans who fought in world war ii. i mean, it ain't -- >> use the phrase -- chris when republicans use the phrase "our country" in this context, they're implying the guy that sits in the white house it isn't his country, too. he's somehow alien. that's the dog whistle there. >> you think that's true? we checked it out, ron, we're going to tack our country back, too. >> and he -- >> that's something -- he's not using it that way. >> oh, no. well, do we know that for a fact, ron? >> yes, i do. >> so -- >> make a point. >> you know it, too. you know it very well what these dog whistles mean. you know very well what the dog whistles mean. you know, michael. you know when rush limbaugh comes on and starts talking about obama -- oreos and it's
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obamio. you know what that means. rick perry the audience. >> you know what? i agree with him but you're not going to agray. anyway, thank you, michael. have a nice weekend, ron. coming up, why would he be considered crazy for a presidential candidate? like former ambassador to china, believe in evolution? is that egghead talk now? is that ivory tower, elitism? responding to rick perry who he thinks is a little out of it, anyway. i'll ask republican party reince priebus if it's okay to believe in evolution. you're watching "hardball," only on msnbc. [ male announcer ] this is the network. a network of possibilities. excuse me? my grandfather was born in this village. [ automated voice speaks foreign language ]
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russ feingold ruled out a run for office out in minnesota. the senator won't run. won't challenge governor scott walker. democrats force a recall election. anyway, feingold a favorite of many progressives of course. another progressive favorite, harvard professor and consumer advocate elizabeth warren, formed an exploratory committee for a potential senate run up in massachusetts again against republican scott brown nap should be interesting. we'll be right back. or hires another employee, it's not just good for business -- it's good for the entire community. at bank of america, we know the impact that local businesses have on communities, so we're helping them with advice from local business experts and extending $18 billion in credit last year. that's how we're helping set opportunity in motion.
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welcome back to "hardball." tonight, "hardball" debut, reince priebus, new head of the republican party that's taken a hard turn to the right, we think. welcome, mr. chairman. >> hey, thank you. >> let me ask you about this comment made by former utah governor john jon huntsman. to be clear, i believe in evolution and trust scientists
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on global warming. cal me crazy. is he the odd man out on those issues in your party now? >> chris, you know, i don't know. i'm not doing a poll of all the candidates of that eschews. you know, this is what's going to happen. a rigorous debate. you've pointed out many time, a lot of different folks in the field. i happen to believe, chris, that having a lot of candidates in the field, having a big primary, is good for our party. it gets a lot of people out there. it gets a lot of earned media, a lot of tv time, a lot of print media and all the horsepower, i think, is on our side of the aisle right now. >> aren't you worried, though, in a world where we have to compete with science, in science and technology with chinese and indian young geniuses and some move here and some still in their countries around the world, we're competing in a world of science and technology to be a country that might be led by someone who doesn't believe in evolution? who doesn't believe in climate change? who doesn't believe in the scientific community of his own country, the national academy of science, for example, on climate
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change. wouldn't that be scary to have somebody so anti-intellectual as president? >> come on. >> wouldn't it be? answer the question. it's your party? >> here's what i think. i don't think the election will be decided on evolution. decided on a fundamental question the american people will ask themselves and they're going to ask themselves whether or not they're better off today than three or four years ago. >> sure. >> and answer -- >> that's the -- if that's the answer you want. >> it's the -- >> if it's just about conditions. i'm asking about the philosophy of who leads our country. this is important. isn't it? talking about the philosophy of our president. isn't it fair to ask about, called him a socialist. in it fair to ask ar perry, bachmann and the rest of them? isn't that fair? >> i don't any it's unfair. but i can't sit here and tell you what the philosophy is of all 12 candidates and sit here and get into a give and take on each and every one of the candidates. >> if it's obama, you call him a socialist.
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>> i can tell you -- wait a minute. i mean, people are going to -- i told what you they're going to ask themselves. whether or not this president's followed through on his promises and what this president told the american people is that he would cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term and what did he do? introduced the biggest structure debt in america. you and i can disagree on a lot of things. what we probably is agree on, he's had a hard time exhibiting a little leadership pe we may differ on what the answer may be, but we both can agree this president has a real hard time leading when our country and the people in this country are starving for real authentic people to lead the greatest country on the face of the earth in times that are very difficult. this president is having a real hard time with that. >> do you have a hard time with the fact your party left this country in wreckage with a hemorrhaging unemployment rate and this president walked in the
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door, got into bed when it was on fire. you're right. you don't point that out. do you? you think you left the bed all made for him and everything was great when he walked in the door. >> no. >> a financial community going crazy. don't say that to me. tell me he walked in the door to hell. just tell me that first. >> hang on, chris. i don't think there's any party or any person blameless in any of this. >> he walk into a good situation, that you left him with? you're blaming him for everything when you say bush wasn't responsible. >> this president has a hard time following through on promises. he said the stimulus would create unemployment at less than 8%. unemployment has been on sustained range we haven't seen in over 30 years, chris. >> i know. >> we flushed a trillion dollars down the toilet and americans are hurting. he said he's cut the deficit in half. biggest in the world. said he'd tackled the dead. the policies of barack obama, not before him, on barack obama's policies he put on a a
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trajectory to put us on a debt than every president before him combined. >> yes. the trouble is the president in before him doubled the national debt, never put out a single spending bill in eight years. isn't that a problem for your record? >> listen, the president's going to be judged on his record. >> okay. >> and his record right now is a cou catastrophe in regard to this. we have a president wrissaling past the graveyard and is on martha's vineyard. >> you have all of your points and made them. let me ask you a question. >> i'm not trying to score points. >> you have scored them and got them on the record now. let me ask you a serious question. what's the difference now between the republican party and the tea party? >> well, i think there's -- obviously we're an organized, structured party, and the tea party is not. it's a group of people who are conservative, independent. people who are disengaged, but
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now engaged. i will say this. it's important to note. >> what's the difference in philosophy? >> i don't know all the differences because there's 100 different tea party groups. let me tell you something, where there are similarities, we need to get our spending under control, our debt under control, we need to respect the constitution. all things that are near and dear to the republican party's heart. i'll also tell you that i don't believe the republican party is in competition with the conservative movement. we're not competing. you know, they're their own organization, or their own entity and i'm grateful for it, because i think it's moved america in the right direction. >> the difference between the republican party and the tea party? one difference? >> we're a structured organization with a registered -- >> on policies? >> what do you mean on policy? >> is there a difference in policy between the tea party people, and new studies now that tea party people tend to be there should be more religion in politics, basically a bad attitude towards race, black
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people, and immigrants. the tea party -- >> the republican -- chris, that's the beauty of the tea party. you can't define what -- what the tea party is, who it is, what their beliefs are because they're not an organized entity. one tea party in rockford, illinois could have a different view than a tea party in wisconsin. the similarities are that we want to get our country back on track economically. we want to recognize that the government's making promises that it just can't keep and we need to get serious about our debt and the deficit in the country or we'll surrender sovereignsy towards bond holders. important issues. >> let me ask your party, i aindustry with a lot of republicans, grew up in a republican family. i was a kid, i was a republican. i completely understand. >> what happened to you, chris? what happened, buddy? >> well, i studied the issues. smaller government, less taxes. they're popular ideas. aye understand the appeal of those. for a long time donald trump was the leader in the polls among
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republicans simply because he challenged the president's legitimacy as an american. there is an appeal until your party for birther stuff. it's gone on and on. the president had to go out and show papers to shut it down. what is it in your party that was so focused has you made donald trump your front-runner because all he did was raise the birther issue? what happened there? you're an expert on politics. >> first of all i didn't make donald trump the front-runner. >> it was in the polls. >> hang on a second, chris. i nerve every one time questioned this issue. in fact i threw it away. i'm not on record with that. our party's not on record with that. but the fact of the matter is, what americans are looking for in this country and the reason why people like donald trump and rick perry and other, mitt romney and the rest of our field, michele bachmann and sarah palin are, resonate with the american people is that americans in this country are starving for authentic real leadership. people with guts and a spine, and this president hasn't been
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able to exhibit any of those things. at all. >> answer my question. you believe that barack obama is a loyal, patriotic american? >> of course. >> okay. thank you, reince priebus. chairman of the republican party. up next, michele bachmann was once worried about anti-americanism in congress. now she's worried about the rise of the soviet union. yes, the soviet union. we'll talk about that when we come back in the "sideshow." you're watching "hardball," only on msnbc. [ grandma ] why do relationships matter? [ grandpa ] relationships are the basis of everything. [ grandma ] relationships are life...
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plus interview bice investigators that in some cases could lean to fines. obviously it's negotiation in many respects. point is, there's a strong chance your name will end up in a scathing editorial on achlt a-17 in the "new york times." sorry, s&p, but revenge is a dish served slow with a great deal of political people. >> clear who he think has the upper hand. another baffling history flub from gop candidate, can you believe it, michele bachmann. this one coming as the foreign policies of bachmann and oh points start playing a role in the campaign trail. speaking on a christian radio program yesterday bachmann had this to say on what the country has to fear in the world right now. >> what people recognize is that there's a fear that the united states is in an unstoppable decline. they see the rise of china, the rise of india. the rise of the soviet union and -- and our loss militarily going forward.
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>> whoa. anyway, when was the last time somebody expressed fear about the rise of the soviet union? two decades when it ceased to exist. this occurred during bachmann's stint working for the irs. she now says her stint working at the irs was a plan to "lerch how they work to defeat them from the inside." anyway, maybe she was too busy with her secret plan to take note of the end of the cold war. and -- i'm glad it is over. up next, some democrats argue that hillary clinton, some democrats, think she would be a stronger president. interesting speculation, but would things really be much different if hillary clinton were president today? we'll see because we're going it argue about it. you're watching "hardball." this is a hot one coming up. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. absolutely. oh, great, that's awesome. what about a platinum graphite rogue with touch-screen nav, bluetooth, and...a moonroof? with or without leather? we got 'em both. [ sighs ] i gotta get back.
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it may be the weekend, but
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no vacation from stress for the men investor. the dow fell below the psychological important 11,000 mark today, 10,800 and change. the s&p down 17. the nasdaq down 38. for the week, three big thumbs down across the plager indices if you have three thumbs. nasdaq saw the worst of it down 6% since monday. speaking of the nas, hewlett-packard nosedived after news its spinning off will spot off commutermaking business and hp stopped productions of its ta tablet computer. announce plans to pick up jobs. one bank among many announcing serious restructuring. and a record, gold. weekly gains in four years ended up at $18.46 an ounce. next week keep your i on bernanke. watching a scheduled speech friday for signals that could cue changes on wall street. that is it from cnbc, first in
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business worldwide. now back to "hardball." the prime driver of economic growth and jobs is going to be our people and the private sector and our businesses. but you know what? government can help. government can make a difference. >> welcome back. that was lines like that, lukewarm pitch from the president. government can help. some of his traditional supporters calling for him to step it up. blockberg used -- he used obama must get bold. tell republicans it's on, and there's a low buzz now from people wondering how a president hillary clinton would have fared. this sunday, an article coming. headlines what would hillary have done? einec
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ironically, rebecca tracer criticizes this talk. she whites, "we forget sometimes our government was designed to limit the powers of the president. there simply was never going to be a liberal messiah whose powers could transcend the limits set by democracy this packed with regressive ob jukzs." anyway, do democrats have reason to feel remorse? political analyst and "washington post" columnist and pat buchanan and eugene robinson. gene, start with you. a "hardball" question. certainly i hear the buzz. ed blogosphere. it's interesting to me, despite terrible economic times and obviously the president's low poll numbers on economic performance, i've yet to hear one elected official in government, who is a democrat, or in a party position, anywhere, come out and say, we would have been bet are off with hillary. >> i haven't heard that. but you are going to hear that.
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keep in mind, people fundamentally still like barack obama even those disappointed for whatever reason, and what we forget, i think, is howreviled hillary clinton was by conservatives. she was demonized, and you could -- if you really want to play the scenario, you would have seen at least the same amount of vitriol and obstructionism and, you know, they wouldn't have made it easy for hillary clinton anymore than they did for barack obama. >> what do you think of that, pat, looking across the aisle? >> i think hillary would not have gotten the sendoff. i was down when barack obama was nominated pap tremendous good mood in the country. african-americans were elated as they'd never have been. she wouldn't have gotten that. on the other hoond r hand, could have held what barack obama is losing badly. young white working class -- >> a 911? >> i don't know her policies
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would have done better than barack obama? >> why help loyalty then? >> loyalty of whom? >> white working people. >> i think it's perceived that barack obama -- first, barack obama's got -- he won 24-1 oop i told you, john mccain gets the same vote at david duke in louisiana. she wouldn't have got that. african-americans would have said we lost that godd golden opportunity. >> would she have beaten mccain? probably would have hard to tell any of these things. a democratic year. the candidate. >> did not run a good -- >> who knows. done better with the white working class, again, white folks and gotten the support of african-americans but not the enthusiasm, energy and fire. >> let's -- the piece we're looking at running in the "new york times." an excerpt about the economy. clinton might have tended to jobs and the economy more quickly than obama did. it's possible there would have been less of a 2010 bloodbath.
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she might have bitten off the ear of a tea partier now and then but there might not have been a tea party. the clintons did not get health care through. the clintons did. the advantage, she wouldn't have tried it again. >> she would not have tried it again. he got it through. and you know, for -- republicans, i know, don't like it, but he got it through and -- >> politically, got something through. >> politically got through. i will say this. i think hillary would have had us in a confrontation with iran. ap neocon -- in the middle east, much closer to israel, much tougher. >> yeah. >> and i think -- >> yes, but let me ask you about the economics. >> when we -- have another war? >> now -- i think you're -- let's talk about the things that bother liberals, prossi iprogre. senate rules that seem
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anti-progressive. you need 60 votes. it's very hard to get 60 votes for anything. you got to get 217 1/2 and 216 in the senate. if you want something done positively for government it's very hard to get it through unless you break the rules. would hillary have broken the rules? >> i will say this. her personal skills with the senators when she went up will in 2000, 2001. the conservative said here she comes, the queen. she worked that. made friends with those people. i don't know if that translates into votes but i think in terms of leadership and personal skills -- >> would she have changed, somehow gotten harry reid to say, to hell with the 60 votes we're jamming it through. >> i don't think she would have changed the rules and i don't think she would have gotten more cooperation from mr. mcconnell than barack obama did. >> i think her personal skills -- >> mcconnell determined to get rid of obama. >> by did they send joe biden up there? biden works the senate.
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and obama doesn't. >> i agree. better personal skills. if clinton had been elected, again, speculating, it been elected president, especially after tenure compared with an unrealized and unblemished obama administration, president hillary clinton would have been compete wig a dream. -- competing with a dream. if obama had lost, hillary won, saying, gee if he only had obama. >> exactly. exactly. we blew this opportunity for hope and change in history, and -- >> and there's not all that much difference. that's not like reagan and rockefeller or something like that. they're not that far apart. obama and hillary. >> here's a question. why -- >> they work so well together. >> the heart of progressives who watch this program. it seems to me that the clintons were able to do things like ball, the budget over eight year. worked with -- newt gingrich and did it. voted for welfare reform.
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got rid of welfare as a right, basically. they did nafta, which drives labor crazy. they were forgiven on every point, gene. this president gets health care through. the greatest social evolvement since the '60s, and he gets nothing but grief. >> well, you know, were the clintons entirely forgiven? i'm not sure they were entirely forgiven. well, you know -- but imagine a hillary clinton administration, imagine bill clinton in the white house. imagine bill clinton in the white house. >> that's good. >> but imagine billion clinton in the white house. there would have been -- it's an ire on the right and -- >> back to you. the pitchfork crowd. working class whites. a lot of pro-choice. i know your crowd and like them personally. here's the question. would they be forgiving hillary clinton, unemployment rate and -- >> no. ip think barack obama, he did climb into a burning bed. i think it would have continued along that way. here's why clinton worked nafta.
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>> i know the joke's on you. the drunk guy lying in bed and there's a fire. he says it's not my fault i got in the bed when it was already on fire. that's an old joke. >> welfare reform republicans like. nafta, the republican establishment loved nafta. these republicans do not like obamacare. so obama went and put through something the republican and tea party cannot stand, whereas clinton was working with them. she -- she was very good at that. she did not -- i mean, what's -- let's not make this rumpy. did not rub everyone the right way. everyone loved hillary clinton. >> hey -- thank you. >> okay. >> moving forward. moving one down to oregon, i like to say.
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eugene robinson. great discussion. pat buchanan. libya leader moammar gadhafi may be -- talking about weasel words. may be preparing to flee the country. wellance okay. he could be gone in a matter of days. that could be news. we'll find out in a couple of days. this is "hardball," on on msnbc.
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back in '83, ronald reagan's nerd year in office, 9.5. reagan set off on a 25-day vacation to his ranch in california. 25 days. not 9 that this president is getting. presidents have always been taking vacations and complaining about it -- we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] this...is the network --
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here is a story. libya's gadhafi's days may be numbered. breaking news that gadhafi may be preparing to flee with his family. to talk about the position from libya, syria and the rest of the world, reporters from the new york times and co-authors after great new book "counter strike" which is the untold story of the secret campaign against al qaeda. tom, let's get to the news here. gadhafi, is he going downer leaving? >> he is isolated and there are indications he may be looking for a way out. >> eric, should we say we will give you a way out or say, if you leave that country, we will take to you the hague and your life is miserable and your head chopped off or you will be hanged or whatever. >> they have been working for
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months to get him out of there. >> why don't they go to sandals and go there quietly. you are telling the guy, if you leave, we will ruin your life, so why leave? >> the rebels are circling tripoli. >> but why do we treat these guys like hitler, like unconditional surrender? >> you have to. he is at the hague. it t.o. go somewhere else, the lawyers -- you're exactly right. >> will we go for that. >> there will be a quiet -- >> the president said something interesting. he said we shouldn't worry about a big incredible perfect storm like 9/11 where they put it all together, an incredible operation, but worely about one guy, what is their capability right now? >> just because he is dead wbt other affiliates that al qaeda has, in yemen and so mall why and north africa, there is still
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a real risk to the united states. >> where are they? if we try it take over afghanistan because we don't want al qaeda there, is that reasonable? or could al qaeda operate out of hamburg, germany in or newark? or can they operate anywhere? >> they already are. yemen is the leading al qaeda affiliate. here in the u.s., because of the internet, there are lone wolves, almost impossible for the police it find. there is no network, no trail, they are the individuals. >> is the president right? tough question. is the president right, they don't have the capability for a big operation right now? >> they don't have the capability of a big mass casualty like 9/11. but they can pick up an aught mafic rifle, shoot up a shopping center, airport, there is a recipe book for how it make ieds, make explosives. >> aren't you amazed -- i'm a movie nut, every time i go to
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the movies or a ball game, an average ball game, over 30,000 people at it. >> right. >> baseball. in a movie, backed houses on friday and saturday nights. it isn't hard it find americans where we are really null verable. >> that's right. think of it as pebbles into the kogs, the juntd underwear bomber, these are not -- >> they can bring an airplane down. >> right. economy is bigger. air traffic stops. >> people are thinking now in the countries, suicide bombers are putting bombs, ieds inside their bodies. >> right. inside their bodies. the problem with that is the body absorbs a lot of the explosion. so it sounds spooky. it is not very effective. >> can they bring a plane down? a guy has an explosive device in him and tsa guys don't pick up on it, can he blow that plane apart and bring it down? >> could be. you just can't get much explosive inside the body,
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chris, it's tough. >> let's talk about this ryson thing here. chemical weapon, apparently al qaeda is trying to get into it. >> we note for the first time that yemen is buying beans to mike ryeson. they wrap it around explosives and detonate it in a place, a movie theater you mentioned, it wouldn't kill that many people but terrorize the country, perhaps shutting down mass transportation. >> you could say, we will hit one movie theater and next week a hundred pz. >> the problem, even of a modest chemical attack, would be a great -- >> how hard is it to make? >> it is easy it make if you have the right conditions. the problem with yemen, it's a very primitive -- >> you have to read this book. 9/11 coming up. the book is called, counter strike. there it is on the screen. the untold story of the secret campaign.
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great reporting. when we return, let me fin wish why it's time for president obama to go big. i mean, after labor day, go big time. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc.
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let me finish to night with a simple recommendation for the president. keep it simple and make it big. the american people need a leader right now. they need to know what the leader wants them to do. what can they do? they want to know. to get this country moving
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again. what should we do? good question. should we push congress to spend more on a job's program? should we raise the heat on those that go against it or refuse to let it go to a vote? should we demand that congress pass such a program? well, he is talking about other things, the president. tax cuts, extended unemployment benefits, trade deals with colombia, panama. i think you need something bigger. something that will force the country to pay attention and take sides. something intriguing, compelling, all right, exciting. maybe it's a jobs program that includes, but it's limited to public works, a jobs program that would put a million people to work. cutting the unemployment rate to 8%. a major fix of our jobs outlook. and the use of the federal government that would put our economic situation rocketing back to normal. it has to be something big enough for all it sai see, i think for every unemployed person in the country to see and take advantage of. we either

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